An Open Letter to Jose: How can you possibly pick this player for Manchester United?

Fellaini Belgium

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has been quick to point out over the last week that football is replete with ‘Einsteins’. And he would surely put TFF into that category.

Well sir, your anger may be somewhat blunted by the fact that we have been strong advocates of you since you were first linked with the Manchester United job and still strongly believe that you are the man to make the club great again.

But there is one element of your work so far that TFF finds impossible to stomach.

The season is of course a marathon not a sprint and you will use all the resources that your squad possesses over the coming 8 months or so.

But the persistent use of Marouane Fellaini is at odds with your general ingenuity as a manager.

TFF has suggested in the past that, so poor is Fellaini, that football may not even be his best sport. We have oft opined that Fellaini never fails to drag the quality of a game downwards.

His technique is quite appalling. He takes three or four touches when one would do and he too often passes the ball sideways or backwards.

Surely this is not what is needed from the anchor man. What makes Fellaini’s selection even harder to stomach is that the superb Michael Carrick is rotting on the bench and Ander Herrera wasn’t even in the match day squad for the Europa League game on Thursday.

Both of these guys are immeasurably better for the base of the midfield. Both are great and quick passers of the ball. Both thrive on the sort of one touch football that is clearly needed to make this still clunky Manchester United team click. And, perhaps most importantly, both bring the best out of Paul Pogba.

The Fellaini/Pogba axis is a disaster and we simply can’t believe that a manager of your quality continues to pick the Belgian, who surely wouldn’t get anywhere near the Tottenham, Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester City or Arsenal first XIs.

You spoke in your press conference this week about how Juan Mata is more suited to the way that Manchester United play than Chelsea’s style.

But where does Fellaini fit into that philosophy? He’s clumsy in the extreme and so hard to watch. Time and again on Thursday he took the easy option when a forward ball was on. United need a player to pass quickly through the opposition lines, but the Belgian simply doesn’t have the vision or technique for this.

TFF isn’t sure that we can watch any more Manchester United matches when Fellaini is on the team sheet. He ruins football games.

The Leicester win should have been a watershed moment for this United team. It was so obvious that Ander Herrera got the whole team clicking and playing the sort of quick, fluent football that is required.

The contrast with Thursday night, when Fellaini started, could not have been greater and until you recognise this, Manchester United will continue to look like a group of disparate, and often desperate, individuals.